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Time for reflection about being a writer.

When I was 14, I wrote a novel, not very long.  And then, I destroyed it. It was too personal, too raw, too me and I was too vulnerable, or so I thought…I wrote dozens and dozens of poems and texts. I wanted  two things : to be a writer AND to play on stage. I was an amateur theater actress and wrote in the school newspapers.

At 16, I wrote down a list of titles for the books I would wrote and a corresponding list of names, the character’s names.This list I still have with me, by my side as I write all that now, for your eyes. I kept on writing, although I had to change my professional choices. Eventually, deeply buried in those marketing jobs, I forgot about my self essential and my real life . Then one night, in August 2010, around 3 in the morning…

…I woke up. I mean, I WOKE UP to my past aspirations.  I was in the kitchen, sleep escaping me. My mind is racing.  For various reasons, over various subjects. And a thin fragile thread, long forgotten, attached to the very essential part of my soul is hit by a light I thought I had lost years ago. It was given back to me.

The energy of the writing spirit.

Now, at this hour of night, that day, I wanted to fight for that. This was the fighting spirit meeting the writing spirit. Good! Let’s go on!

So, in the heart of the night, I let the sun rise. I wrote  for 4 hours on my laptop. Characters knocked on the door of my mind, allowing themselves in, story unfolding neatly and energy increasingly awaking my creativity and my imagination…

Since then I have kept writing.

Now, I feel that I need to write more, to publish frenetically. I feel miserable taht I have not been able to give complete work to my publisher. I am affected by the virus of perfectionism. I rewrite, again and again, and again.  I got stuck on sentences for days, to achieve the ultimate construction. Letting go is difficult, and reaching a satisfying level is complexly hard. Sometimes, I think I have not done much in those past months. So I decided to summarize it.

What have I done in those past months, then? (Apart from my daily duties, of course). I did my homework and my work. And I ‘m still on it.

Firstly, I have prepared myself to properly tackle the writing of a script (because I am also a film lover since an early age) so I have :

  • read about 15/ + books on the subject ( The little red writing book, The golden book on writingwhat’s this fantasy about colours??-, How to write a damn good thriller, How to write a damn good mystery, The art & craft of storytelling, A writer’s guide to fiction, The Bible of screenwriting, Crafty screenwriting, Writing screenplays that sell, Writing is a verboh?, The writer’s book of wisdom, See Jane write : a girl’s guide to writing chick lit, How not to write a screenplayappealing/disturbing title, hence brilliant,  How to write what you want & sell what you write – long title, didn’t like the book, and 2 or 3 others.
  • shelled, analysed and studied about 40 scripts (and I am far from those 2/week I need to read!), among which  Eve (Mankiewicz), Body Heat (for that subtext), The big easy, Ocean’s 11 & Ocean’s 12, The electric Horseman, Howards EndBeing John Malkovich, 3 Days of the Condor, Sherlock TV ep, Luther TV ep, The Prisoner TV ep, The Mentalist 4 TV ep, Scrubs  TV ep, West Wing 2 TV ep,   Amadeus, The Godfather, Donnie Brasco, Maltese Falcon, Pulp Fiction, Heat, Barton Fink, Sleepy Hollow, O Brother, Stagecoach, Night of the Hunter, The big Lebowski, The Big Sleep,  When Harry met Sally (yeah, for THAT scene, and see how it’s written), Some like it hot, etc…
  • read 7 modern plays (The Odd Couple  -his and hers- , Who’s afraid of Virginia Woolf, The importance of being earnest, Ginger ale boy and Electric ballroom by Enda Walsh, one Shakespeeare…)
  •   read 6 novels , including the wonderful War Horse,  to relax

Secondly, I have written for myself (all)  and my publisher (a very small part) and you, -soon to be mine agent  (some):

  •  a 433p techno-thriller , with 2nd and 3rd  (same hero) in the synopsis -ripening room)
  • a 2x 150p drama novel (considering compiling to make one 300p book)
  • 2 short-stories
  • a long-feature radioplay (53min)
  • a short film screenplay
  • another short film screenplay
  • a synopsis for another short film
  • an article about a painting exhibition
  • 10 songs out of 12 for a musical project (with a music composer)
  • 20 poems (some are 2 or 3p long)
  • 4 detailed synopses for novels
  • 2 detailed synopses for short-story
  • 9 detailed synopses for a TV series
  • a synopsis for a noir feature film
  • 1 fan fiction TV ep
  • a 1st draft for a 3-act play in need of rewriting, editing, finishing and trimming
  • bits and pieces to be assembled into projects
  • 10 loglines /ideas for novel/Shortstory/script.
  • posts in a blog & tweets in a twitter account

I have relaxed in watching :

  •  300 ( or more) films and TV Series episodes, of various genres. (Next thing, I must try Doctor Who) [I can watch Sherlock AND read the script in the same time while sipping coffee. I’m like Windows, I am multitask) [[Sometimes, I watch the entire series in a row until it’s über-too late]]

In the meantime, when I have an insomnia, I also have observed & studied my targets (thanks Writer’s Market and magazines and blogs and news) and prepared my business and marketing plans, established the communication plan, established a list of other  contests I want to participate to. I have a new idea for a short…

I need a coffee, now. Strong, black, ultra caffeinated. Maybe I can just chew some coffee beans… It’s faster and a lot less fussier than brewing a mug ‘o joe…

It’s going to be a short night.

So long, Folks.

Coffee and films, what could go wrong?